SOURCE: RAUNAK KUNDE / NEWS BEAT / IDRW.ORG
Indian Navy has finally revealed the exact length and width of the two large elevators after months of speculation if they can take aircraft from the upper deck to the lower deck that is often used for the storage, maintenance, and repairs of the fighter jets that are operated from the decks of the aircraft carrier.
INS Vikrant has two SAC lift with dimensions of 10M(W) x 14M(L) that are perfectly fine to operate Mig-29K and LCA-Navy that the Indian Navy originally had in mind when Vikrant was under development but it will be close call for the F-18 E/F Super hornet that is 18.38M(L) and 9.93M(W) with folded wings but the aircraft width does manage to fall just short of 10M mark and it should be able to scrape through it.
But Rafale M has a wingspan of 10.90M which is 0.90M more than what two SAC lifts onboard INS Vikrant can accommodate, Rafale M doesn’t have foldable wings which could make it near impossible for it to operate from two SAC lifts that are installed on the INS Vikrant unless Dassault Rafale M is offered with wings that can be folded or modified to be shorter.
Indian Navy’s future deck-based indigenous Twin Engine Deck Based Fighter (TEDBF) has a wingspan of 11.2M but after it is folded it becomes 7.6M that can be easily accommodated on those lifts.
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